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Before Breakfast – Absorbed Review

Absorbed in Before Breakfast and the talent they pursue is the only way to be. Absorbed, their latest track, knows it. Listeners know it too. Anyone that has seen Before Breakfast conduct themselves live, their involving process of moving string dedication and emboldened vocal strength is a delight. But even in that soak up of interest and attention, Before Breakfast takes a solvent approach, dissolving what they can of their most definitive instrumental traits. They are not yet pigeonholed and Absorbed does well to keep the group well away from that. Before Breakfast are at their best here, a vulnerable-sounding track that holds out hope of want and isolation. Its desire for quiet days and the removal from anxiety-inducing situations is a touchingly familiar situation. 

Hearing that charted through Absorbed is nothing short of a demanding, immense process. Those sharp cello inductions that ease under the strong vocal presence Absorbed benefits from is nothing short of a treat. It is over before you know it, like all nice experiences. Thankfully Absorbed is recorded and there for good, to be played over and over unlike all those smatterings of desire and beauty that fade in the first person. Absorbed is a shocker of a track for how it moves the listener, for where it can take them just through isolated cello consistencies toward its wonderful end. Sometimes the reality of cold shocks of water is a real comfort. Before Breakfast consider that and do so with a consistent sincerity. 

Before Breakfast are naturals at that. Just look back at their fast-growing discography for clear examples of that sincerity. Care from an artist is of no real surprise when the industry is cutthroat and the attention of potential listeners and fatigued journalists who have accidentally tipped parsley into their coffee is always in balance. Before Breakfast is a clear example of how important the opening act slot is for musicians on the rise. It is there, in The Leadmill, that quality was found just days before Christmas. That an excellent album was discovered. Sometimes the glittering nostalgia for a career style never experienced before Bandcamp and email chains modernised it all, is nice to feel. Absorbed is a unique album. Its experiences and glowing, constant rise are malleable in the best way possible.  

Sheffield is the place where bands go to thrive. Mostly, anyway. It is surely now not a coincidence that the city has given listeners so many greats. Cast the net back far enough in time and retrieve ABC, The Human League and Pulp from their historic origins. Push forward further and see the still-existing full-timers in motion. Arctic Monkeys and Richard Hawley were moulded in that city. Before Breakfast opened for the latter, and with tracks as well-formed and important as Absorbed, it is clear to see why they are sharing the same stage as a Sheffield legend. They are themselves on that path. Convincing cello work, a thick layering of piano that manages that blur of broadly accepted soppiness but a key placement and a keen knack for knowing when to silence it gives it the bursts of heartfelt integrity that come through well-mixed work. Stay the course.

Ewan Gleadow
Ewan Gleadowhttps://cultfollowing.co.uk/
Editor in Chief at Cult Following | News and culture journalist at Clapper, Daily Star, NewcastleWorld, Daily Mirror | Podcast host of (Don't) Listen to This | Disaster magnet
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